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tv   CBS Evening News With Katie Couric  CBS  September 29, 2009 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT

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bill whitaker has the latest. >> reporter: according to witnesses, the fishing village of sau sau beach fale on the island of samoa was completely washed away. villagers ran for their lives to higher ground. in pag go pag go, the capital of american samoa, the waves surged about 100 yards inland, washing away the national park visitors center. radio host john rainer was down the coast. we spoke to him by phone. >> it was absolute frantic people. people were talking about "go high" or "go pray somewhere." just get away from the ocean as quickly as you can. >> reporter: bay area sailor wayne hodgins was docked in pago pago relaying messages by twitter. "one death i know of, several swept away and still missing" he wrote. >> there was a couple with a young boy and the other canadian fellow and my dog that they had taken because she was about to
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fall off of the boat. so they were clinging to the light standard. the water came and went very, very quickly but was absolutely ferocious, as you can imagine with that volume. >> reporter: now, the earthquake and tsunami sent shock waves of fear and concern as far away as hawaii. the tsunami watch in hawaii was canceled after two hours. the death toll in the snow wan islands now stands at 14, but it's feared that number could climb as reports filter in from outlying areas. harry? >> smith: bill whitaker, thanks. now to the fight against the flu, the first doses of h1n1 vaccine were shipped out today and not a moment too soon. every state but vermont has already seen a flu outbreak, some the seasonal strain, some h1n1, and knew the h1n1 vaccine is ready, the next challenge is getting it to where it is needed most. here's nancy cordes. >> reporter: you're looking at some of the first batches of h1n1 vaccine, now being rushed out the door. but many states are far from
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figuring out how they'll distribute the 25 is million doses headed their way. >> we have let so many people go in the public health system, there really isn't a ready-maid way to get it out to people quickly. >> reporter: take dekalb county, georgia, where there are only 44 school nurses in the county's 140 schools, which is complicating plans for mass vaccinations of children. >> when schools came back into session and kids went to college, we saw large numbers of cases. >> reporter: the good news, federal health officials told congress today, is that there will eventually be enough vaccine for everyone who wants it. >> we believe the vaccine is likely to be highly effective. we won't know until it's used, but that's our belief based on the best science. >> reporter: but that hasn't quelled anxiety about the hastily produced vaccine. >> in albany today, new york state health care workers protested a new regulation requiring that they all get inoculated.
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in washington, d.c., this mother of two said she'll wait to get her children vaccinated even though her three-month-old is at the highest risk. >> my doctor recommended that we not get the h1n1 vaccine for the first round because it's only been tested on 600 children and that's just not a big enough test sample to know what the reaction is going to be. >> reporter: at the c.d.c. in atlanta, the emergency operations center staff has swelled from six to 232. they're monitoring both the flu and the vaccination process around the clock. officials there are scrambling to compile a database of vaccine side effects to track any adverse reactions to the shot. >> we are concerned any time something new comes out and we understand that the public is concerned as well and the public has a right to a safe vaccine. >> reporter: the national institutes of health points out that initial safety tests have been very encouraging and that the h1n1 flu is far, far more hazardous to your health than
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the vaccine is. harry? >> smith: nancy cordes in washington tonight. thanks. h1n1 and the fears fears surrounding it are forcing entire school districts to close down in spite of federal recommendations to keep them open. more than 6,000 students in huntsville, texas, were told to stay home after a flood of sick calls. more now from don teague. >> reporter: in colorado, this middle school closed its doors after 40% of students stayed home sick. there are similar closures in tennessee, oklahoma, and texas. >> seemed like the best thing to do at this point was to deep kids at home, keep them away from each other so they're not reinfecting. >> reporter: health officials say h1n1, while highly contagious, is no more dangerous than seasonal flu. but in fort worth, texas... >> my baby girl was... she was like this... she was radiant. >> reporter: tom osborne isn't convinced. his 14-year-old daughter, who he says had no underlying medical conditions, died sunday, four days after contracting h1n1 flu.
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>> they did... i mean heroically doing c.p.r. for 40 minutes while the surgeons tried to get her set up on that machine and they had 26 people in that one little room trying to help her. >> reporter: osborne believes the anti-viral medication tamiflu might have saved his daughter, but says her doctors chose not to administer it, citing c.d.c. guidelines recommending early doses only beb gifb hospitalized patients and others including children under the age of two or those with underlying medical conditions. >> we've tried to review the science of what we know about these anti-viral medicines in the clinical circumstances and direct the medicines where they can be life saving dorr the midwest good. >> reporter: until the h1n1 vaccine is widely available later next month, health officials say the most important thing to do is what these people are doing: getting vaccinated against the regular seasonal flu now. don teague, cbs news, fort worth
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texas. >> smith: now the battle over health care reform. a public insurance option seems all but dead in the senate, anyway. on vote of 15-8, the finance committee defeated an amendment that called for a federally funded public option modeled on medicare. also defeated 13-10 a similar public option but with no federal funding. also in washington today, the federal reserve rolled out the new consumer protections it's proposing under the credit card act, but they wouldn't take effect right away, and as national correspondent jim axelrod tells us, no one knows that better than the credit card companies. >> reporter: the credit card industry got a bill of its own today. 800 pages of rules from the fed spelling out the credit card reforms president obama signed into law last may. >> it takes what might be cracks and crevices and tries to cement them up and give people a working blueprint of actually what they're going to have to comply with and how congress
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really wants this carried out. >> reporter: set to be implemented next february, the regulations prohibit any interest rate increase in the first year after opening an account. any rate increase on an existing balance. and they prohibit consumers under 2 is from getting a card unless they prove they can pay or get a signature from a parent. leading up to the implementation of these rules, the credit card companies jacked up their lowest-advertised rates an average of 20%. >> a lot of these institutions are really skating on the edge in terms of pushing congress over the edge. >> reporter: in fact, house financial services chair barney frank is so angry he's talking about moving up the rules' start date from february to december. the 5,000 companies that issue cards say that's too soon. >> this is a monumental change and we must make sure we get this right. >> reporter: the banks are also under mounting pressure. discover's credit card losses were up 8% in august. bank of america 10%. citigroup, 2 is%.
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but that's not generating a lot of sympathy these days from consumers or congress. jim axelrod, cbs news, new york. >> reporter: the afghan immigrant accused of plotting a terror attack here in new york pleaded not guilty today. a federal judge ordered najibullah zazi held without bail. the prosecutor said zazi was part of an international conspiracy and had at least three accomplices, but their names and whereabouts have not been revealed. coming up next on the "cbs evening news," private guards turn the u.s.'m be any kabul into animal house. government investigators were warned years ago. why didn't they stop it? mom was diagnosed with moderate alzheimer's. it was tough news to hear. everything changed.
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with one layer that dissolves quickly... ...one layer that lasts all day ...and no layers that irritate your stomach the way that ibuprofen can. it's tough on your body pain. not on your body. >> smith: we showed you the photos earlier this month: civilian security guards out of control during wild parties at the u.s. embassy in kabul. it turns out, government investigators were warned long ago things weren't right at the embassy, but nothing was done. the question is why. sharyl attkisson went looking for answers as she followed the money. i as inspector general for the state department, howard krongard was supposed to be an independent watchdog. it was his job to investigate the very type of misconduct alleged at the u.s. embassy in kabul, forced sexual hazing of
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guards, contract fraud, and west of tax dollars. cbs news has learned that serious allegations about the embassy reached krongard's office two years ago where they apparent livanished into thin air. how that could have happened is even harder to explain when you consider who made the complaint: senator joe lieberman, head of the homeland security committee. his staffers say they notified krongard's office about security and all from allegations made by high-level whistle-blowers from inside armor group, the company that provides embassy security. do you remember that? >> no. i have no knowledge of that whatsoever. >> reporter: but cbs news has learned krongard had a special and controversial link to the company he should have been policing. his brother buzzy, former executive director of the c.i.a. was on armor group's board of directors, armor group's kabul embassy contract is worth $187 million tax dollars. did you know your own brother was on armor groups board of
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directors. >> no, i do not. >> reporter: why didn't you know? >> i don't know. i guess number one i'm not sure why i should have known but number two he never told me. >> reporter: you should have known, i think, in the opinion of a lot of people, because it would be a perceived conflict of interest. >> he was a senior official in the central intelligence agency. he did not discuss his matters with me. it wouldn't have made any difference. i had nothing to do with armor group. >> reporter: krongard insists there was no conflict because he and his brother "lead separate lives." if this scenario sounds familiar it is. >> i'm not my brother's keeper. >> reporter: about the same time the armor group complaint disappeared in krongard's office lawmakers accused him of dragging his feet into another war contractor, black water. on november 14, 2007, krongard is asked under oath if brother buzzy is involved in black water he says no. but when faced with evidence to the contrary, he phones his brother during a break and then a stunning reversal.
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>> i had not been aware of that and i want to state on the record right now that i hereby recuse myself from any matters having to do with blackwater. >> reporter: krongard resigned under fire a short time later. we showed our documentary evidence of buzzy krongard's armor group ties to danielle brian, she heads the watchdog group that exposed the embassy guard scandal. >> the sign that the i.g.'s brother was also on the board of armor group is breathtaking. >> reporter: there's no way to know what would have happened without the possible conflict of interest, but watchdogs say had the armor group allegations been aggressively investigated then, it might have prevented two year's worth of fraud, waste, and security risks being alleged today. sharyl attkisson, cbs news, washington. >> smith: well, how many supreme court justices can you name in the justices posed today for their annual class photo and, as a public service, left to right that's anthony kennedy, samuel alito, john paul stevens and
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ruth bader ginsburg. then chief justice john roberts, steven breyer, antonin scalia, sonia sotomayor, and clarence thomas. off the coast of south america, newly released video shows the british navy on the attack. the brits opened fire on a boat operated by drug runners and sent it to the bottom of the sea but not before the navy seized a record six tons of cocaine valued at $384 million. coming up next, the push to get drivers' hands-- both of them-- back on the wheel. (announcer) don't let your migraine become someone else's pain. excedrin migraine. clinically proven to relieve your migraine
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why don't banks ? at ally bank our 9-month no penalty cd gives you a great rate with no fees for early withdrawal. it's just the right thing to do. >> smith: federal government will host a major summit tomorrow on the dangers of distracted driving. a.a.a. says one in five drivers admits to texting behind the wheel in the last 30 days. more now from daniel sieberg. >> reporter: on a makeshift test track in washington, teenage drivers are about to learn a valuable lesson. how many of you have texted or used a cell phone while driving, raise your hand. >> my driving skills are... i don't want to say above everyone else's but... >> reporter: 17-year-old joseph was confident about his multitasking abilities until his instructor drove him to distraction. >> i think this call is for you. how's the texting going?
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i was this harder than you expected it snob >> it was challenging. i went expecting when she threw on me. the texting, cell phone calling, that was lot to handle. >> reporter: teens may be the worst offenders, but we're all at risk. one prominent study revealed texting or using a cell phone while driving is as debilitating as having a blood alcohol level of .08%, legally drunk in most states. and distracted drivers are four times as likely to be in a sere courthouse crash. when it comes to calls, some say hands-free devices are a safer alternative. >> wibl that it really is the issue of eyes off the road and hands off the wheel that creates the real risk with distracted driving. >> reporter: but researchers have long warned it's not just the physical act of using the phone but the actual conversation that's the danger. in fact, the brain reduces visual activity, especially peripheral vision, when engaged in a conversation. as for texting, a cbs news/"new york times" poll shows 90% of those surveyed think texting
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while driving should be illegal. yet among younger people, some 16% think it should be allowed. the big question, though, are americans changing their behavior? only 63% of those surveyed said they'd abide by laws that regulate cell phone use in cars. transportation secretary ray lahood says enforcement must improve. >> we've done it with seat belts where enforcement is very strong now and i think we'll get to it with texting also. >> reporter: this teen got the message. >> i will not be distracted when i drive. i will keep my eyes on the road, notice other drivers. i want to avoid that accident. >> reporter: experts agree. the real solution lies in our own hands. daniel sieberg, cbs news, washington. >> smith: here in new york, a state appeals court dismissed dan rather's $70 million breach of contract suit against cbs. the court said there was no breach because the company continued to pay his salary even after he was removed as anchor of the "cbs evening news." rather's lawyer says he will
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appeal now to the state's highest court. still ahead, jewelry and diplomacy. the albright collection next. d. 24/7... including the eight hours you spend with your eyes closed. prilosec otc. heartburn gone. power on. prepare your mouth for a battle against germs. protect your mouth right with crest pro-health rinse at night. it kills 99% of germs that cause gingivitis, plaque, and bad breath, without the burn of alcohol. for a healthier mouth that's cleaner in the morning. that make every day special. fancy feast introduces an entirely new way to celebrate any moment. fancy feast appetizzrs. simple high qualiiy ingredients like wild alaskan salmon, white meat chicken, or seabass and shrimp in a delicate broth, prepared without by-products or fillers.
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that adds to our deficits over the next decade. everyone will have the security and stability that's missing today. you can blow your nose but nothing comes out! advil cold & sinus knows that the real problem isn't always mucus. it's often swelling caused by inflammation in your nasal passages. the right medicine for the real problem is advil cold & sinus with a strong decongestant that reduces swelling to relieve sinus pressure plus the power of advil for the pain. advil cold & sinus. the right medicine for the real problem. ask for the red box at the pharmacy counter. >> smith: as secretary of state, madeleine albright was known for diplomatic pronouncements and fashion statements.
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famous for her hats and her pins. katie couric tells us there's a story behind those pins. >> this is the trailing eagle. >> reporter: it's part jewelry collection... >> this particular pin was given to me by the president of yemen. >> reporter: part diplomatic arsenal. did you ever think your pins would wind up in a museum? >> never, never, never. >> reporter: madeleine albright made history as the first female secretary of state. her brooch collection, or her pins, as she calls them, have a history all their own. would you say this is the most important pin in your collection? or at least the pin that started it all? >> well, this is the pin that started it all, because what happened was saddam hussein after i had come to the united nations as ambassador called me an unparalleled serpent. and i happened to have this snake pin and so i thought, well when we deal with iraq i'm going to wear the snake pin. >> reporter: and for a conversation with a russian diplomat about anti-ballistic missile... >> he looked at it and said
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"that one of your interceptors?" i said yes. >> reporter: for negotiations with the palestinians, a bee. did people like yasser arafat say "secretary albright, i see the bee. what are you trying to say?" >> well, he gave me a beautiful butterfly. float like a butterfly sting like a bee. >> reporter: her vast garden of pins-- cataloged in a new book and on display at new york's museum of art and design-- are a visual biography of a diplomatic career. through the years, she's collected around 300 of them. some were purchased for special occasions. >> i thought if by some miracle i'm secretary of state i might buy this pin for myself. and soy did go get it when i was named and i thought "well, i'll wear it for my swearing in." >> reporter: others were gifts from diplomats all over the world. >> this dove was given to me by leah rabin, who is the widow of prime minister rabin, who has been asis nated. >> reporter: some of her most
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precious pins came from everyday people like that one from new orleans. the two am thets represent two purple hearts. >> aud of a sudden a young man came up to me with a box and he said "my father is sitting over there, he's a d-day veteran and my mother died as a result of katrina. my father had given her this pin for their 50th wedding anniversary and we think that she would want you to have it." and i kind of... i was undone. i really was undone. >> reporter: for secretary albright, the pins are more than the materials they're made of as she broke the glass ceiling-- and, of course, she has a pin far, too-- she broke the ice with foreign ministers and paved the way for her sister secretaries condoleezza rice and hillary clinton. >> my seven-year-old granddaughter said to her mother "so what was the big deal about grandma mahdi being secretary of state? only girls are secretaries of
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state." and in her lifetime, except for a little bit of colin powell, it's been girls. >> smith: that's the "cbs evening news." katie will be back tomorrow. i'll see you in the morning on the "early show." good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.w
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> "entertainment tonight" in high-definition. >> i was not ready to go. >> patrick swayze's chilling final words. >> a single thought popped into my mind. >> his wife's tragic miscarriage. >> i felt completely crushed with grief. jon gosselin judumped anybody need a sister out there? >> how far will donnie go to win? >> oh, baby. >> exactly. oh, baby. >> if you hurt, you hurt offcamera. secret khloe kardashian details. >> was it

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